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A surface crack embedded in the clad layer of a reactor pressure vessel (RPV) has been identified as a critical safety assessment criterion in a pressurized thermal shock accident. This project was initiated to determine the severity of such cracks experimentally by using irradiated material, and to identify the material properties and stress conditions in the local region of the crack that are significant to the analysis. Bend bar tests provided an experimental simulation of the subject RPV surface crack. This report covers the analysis techniques used and presents the findings indicated by the experimental results for irradiated and unirradiated materials.
cladding, surface, bend bar, pressurized thermal shock, elastic-plastic fracture, R-curve
McCabe, Donald E.
Senior scientist, Materials Engineering Associates, Lanham, MD